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Chicago’s Biggest Book Fair Is Back July 23-26

Jul 9, 2015
The Newberry Book Fair on July 23-26, Chicago’s biggest annual used book binge, has something for every reader.

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Lodging

Touring Rome and Vatican City on our own


The alarm doesn’t go off. Despite the directions and our plan to walk through the Borghese Gardens to the Borghese Gallery, with its fabulous collections of paintings, sculptures, mosaics and bas-reliefs, mainly from 15th to 18th Centuries. We have a reservation -- apparently reservations are needed at this small gem of a museum. more
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A trip to Italy with my college graduate


When we arrive in Rome at noon the next day, a driver arranged by Jill Kammer, who with her husband Leon runs www.italy-accom.com was waiting for us. I know we could have grabbed a taxi or much cheaper, the train into Rome, but after a long flight, a little luxury was in order, I figured, especially when arriving in a city I don’t know well. more
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To Sea World’s new Aquatica and other water parks this summer


There are 36 water slides, six rivers and lagoons, white sandy beaches and two terrific kids' water play areas. Let's not forget the animals -- Commerson's Dolphins (take the "Dolphin Plunge" down 250 feet of clear tubes, through their habitat), Macaws, and colorful African Cichlids, which, for the uninitiated, are colorful fish found in freshwater lakes and rivers in Africa, Central and South America, among other far-flung places.) more
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BEYOND THE BEACH IN BELIZE


Mick Fleming arrived in dugout canoe; Lucy Fleming on horseback a day later. There were no roads to the overgrown farm in the Cayo district of Belize that the young couple hoped to run. Their land was a jungle - literally. "But there was something about the place," Fleming, who was raised in England, recalls more than 30 years later. more
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A trip to Walt Disney World with two little ones


DAY ONE — It’s 3 p.m. and the pool at Disney’s Boardwalk resort in Orlando is packed with parents and kids, including a lot of little ones. “It takes patience with young ones. They get so overwhelmed and excited but more »
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Chaa Creek — started small before “eco” was a word


Mick Fleming approached in a dugout canoe. “But there was something about the place,” he recalls more than 30 years later. His wife Lucy, who arrived on horseback the day after he saw the overgrown farm, agrees. “This place always had a certain amount of magic -- a pull. I felt it. We were young and crazy -- no money and decided to be pioneers.” more
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On to the Cayo District


The 36-acre resort, which is growing popular with families, also has a terrific pool and a young chef who is said to be among the best in Belize. Most of the vegetables and herbs are provided from the organic garden -- everything from zucchini and peppers to cilantro, dill and parsley. (How about tipsy tequila shrimp or beef carpaccio, homemade pasta or tenderloin? Did I mention the wine cellar? The spa? more
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Placencia and Sein Beit


The small (1200 people) town of Placencia is about a four mile cab ride from The Inn at Robert’s Grove. This isn’t a typical resort town -- not yet anyway. We don’t see many souvenir shops or much of any shopping. Some friends we’ve made at the resort lead us to De Tatch, a thatched-roof no-wall restaurant down a tiny meandering street, past one-room houses on stilts. more
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A tiny island on the reef off Belize


It’s just me and the two Pelicans. I’m watching them from my chair on a tiny island -- less than an acre around -- named Robert’s Cay that’s about 20 miles -- and more than an hour’s boat ride in a choppy sea with waves up to five feet -- from the Inn at Robert’s Grove where we’re staying. more
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A Week in Belize (after a nightmare in the airports)


We arrived yesterday evening after typically frustrating flights. First, we had to get our flights changed because of the American Airlines MD-80 inspection mess. That took hours on the phone. We thought we were home free when we were able to rebook our flights on Delta but no such luck. At the airport in New York, we encountered incredibly long lines for check-in and security. more
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